On Thursday, NASA’s Perseverence Rover successfully landed on the surface of Mars – and scientists are already studying photos transmitted across the miles of space. “A key objective for Perseverance’s mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet’s geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith.”
If you’re a “space geek” or wonder why “space geeks” are out there, you might want to listen to Why do Humans Want to Set Foot on Mars?
For the first time since 1944, people world-wide will be able to see a blue moon on October 31st – Halloween. “The next full moon on Halloween that will be visible worldwide is expected in 2077, according to the Farmer’s Almanac.” Blue moons are, sadly, not actually blue, and refer to the occurrence of a second full moon during one month.
With the surge in Covid cases, we’re all looking for alternate ways to mark this holiday safely. Why not moon-gaze in your back yard?
Start now to plan your (safe and socially-distant) star-gazing nights this summer. Find a place far from the city lights on a cloudless night.
Delta Aquarid Shower produces about 20 meteors an hour from July 12 to Aug. 23, and peak July 28-29. The meteors radiate from the constellation Aquarius and are best viewed after midnight and before dawn.
According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, “the Dog Days of Summer are traditionally the 40 days beginning July 3 and ending August 11, which coincide with the dawn rising of Sirius, the Dog Star, the brightest of the stars. This is soon after the Summer Solstice, which of course also indicates that the worst summer heat will soon set in.”
Try lakeside / beach time with your dog (and family?) to “take the edge off” July heat, or, grab a telescope some night and look for Canis Major (Big Dog) with Sirius shining brightly. And take a look at the Astronomy Subject Guide.
Koch was born in Grand Rapids and raised in North Carolina where she earned BS degrees in Electrical Engineering and Physics, and a MS in Electrical Engineering from NC State. Koch gained popularity by sharing her beautiful photos of the Earth.
You might have heard a whoosh of noise this morning – undoubtedly made by hundreds of Tina’s relatives on “the Ridge” in Comstock Park breathing a sigh of relief that she has arrived home safely.